TV and mobile giant Sky has just unveiled a UK MacBook purchase plan that gives users the chance to buy a Mac from as little as £22 per month, with no interest and the opportunity to upgrade their device every two years.
The new plans, which feature shades of Apple’s popular iPhone Upgrade Program, have been rolled out across all of Apple’s best MacBooks from 2023, as well as last year’s 13-inch MacBook Air with M2, and the ever-present M1 MacBook Air from 2020.
This is undoubtedly the cheapest upfront cost on offer for Apple’s MacBooks, so if you want to get one by paying a relatively low monthly fee, this could be the plan for you. Naturally, the usual caveats about taking out a loan for a device apply (there are credit checks, and swapping a device earlier costs more), but on the whole, this is shaping up to be one of the most enticing ways to buy a Mac in the UK right now.
MacBook plans at Sky - iMore’s take
Sky’s new MacBook plans start from as little as £22 a month, with a £12 upfront fee. For that, you can have the amazing M1 MacBook Air in any color. The length of the contract is 48 months, but after 36 months you can swap to a new device at no extra cost. Considering that most MacBooks have a life span well beyond this, that’s a really exciting prospect. Trading in will restart the plan with a fresh term and possibly different monthly fees if you chose a better deal, but this is essentially a MacBook equivalent of Apple’s iPhone Upgrade Program.
“These interest-free deals are an excellent way of grabbing a new MacBook for little to no extra cost. The monthly repayments are pretty low, and you can opt for how long you’d like to wait until you can upgrade to a new machine. This is perfect for a new student in need of a MacBook; just make sure you can pay the monthly payments, or it can affect your credit score and future borrowing options”
On all of the plans, you can opt for a 36-month deal with a device swap after just 24 months. These are more expensive, for example, the M1 MacBook Air plan would be £24 a month upfront, with payments of £31 a month thereafter.
The good (and perhaps the dangerous) aspect of these plans is that they make pushing out the boat for a slightly better model much more attainable. A much newer M2 MacBook Air 13-inch is £25 a month, only £3 a month more than the M1 model, making upgrading a no-brainer.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro starts at £29 a month, while Apple’s hefty 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models are £46 a month and £58 a month respectively.
If you’d rather a tablet, Sky already offers the iPad in a similar vein, but these MacBook plans seem to be where the smart money is at. The overall prices of these models are slightly higher than the alternative upfront cost, but never by more than £100, which over a three or four-year plan is a negligible difference.
There is one small caveat with the iPads; you must take out a data plan for the duration of the contract. However, you can opt for the 100MB option, which is free. If you want more data so that your Mac is guaranteed internet through a dongle, you can add up to 80GB, but returns start to diminish here. Remember too that Sky data rolls over into the next month for up to three years if you don’t use it.
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Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.
Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9